(my laptop’s on a) Midnight Train to Georgia

Hello!  I’m back.  And I hope you’ll see me posting a little more frequently (and certainly more succinctly) from now on.  You see, I’ve been to a blogging workshop this weekend, and for the first time – well – ever, I’ve had the time and space to focus on what I want this blog to be.  I’ve been fortunate enough to have been mentored for a few days by Melbourne writer Karen Andrews, of Miscellaneous Mum.  And now it’s over to me to put all of that wisdom imparted into practice right here.  

No pressure to be brilliant or anything…

My hello! coffee, West Village, NYC

My hello! coffee, West Village, NYC

As a few of you will know, I’ve been writing about my experiences as a parent, and as a 30-something-turned-40-something woman for a little while now.  In fact, it’s been almost a year since my first nail-biting, bumbling foray into the blogiverse.

This time last year I was floating around on my own little cloud 9, looking ahead to two wonderful, child-free weeks in New York City.  The blog was merely a seed of a thought, and my anxieties around leaving our two children for that length of time had taken shape as my own personal guilt-gremlins (who were prodding me at regular intervals).

Sadly, there’ll be no international jet-setting for us this year, but with school and kinder now up and running, I find myself with just a fraction more time to myself, and a hankering to be creative.  I figure it’s time to put some concerted effort into Life is a Minestrone, and see what comes about.  You’ll be pleased to know that I also plan on putting a concerted effort into drinking coffee, and indulging in the occasional nap on the couch.  I figure I deserve at least that, after 7 years of having to go to the toilet with an audience. 

Many of you have been generous in reading my verbose accounts so far, and have made me feel so encouraged with your liking and sharing (ooh, and I do love the comments!).  It’s gratifying to see that people are reading my musings, and that they’re eliciting the odd chortle from time to time.  

So here ends my little Hello speech.  But I’ll leave you with a valuable life lesson I learnt this weekend on my way home from blogging school:

It turns out that you (that is, I) don’t need to be drunk, or otherwise incapacitated, to do really stupid things on public transport.  For example, disembarking a train carriage carrying only a telephone and a water bottle, and failing to remember that when you boarded the carriage, you were in possession of a bag (containing laptop and credit card).  Oops.  Double oops.

Flinders St Station

Bye bye laptop bag….(Photo: Omer Ziv)

The good news story is that I was saved from my stupidity by a very nice end-of-line station-master, and a very forward-thinking husband (who immediately threw the children into the car for ‘a big train chase’), after my panicked call.  He was on the platform at Lilydale when the train arrived, and had said laptop bag delivered straight into his arms.  Computer, credit card, cash, all intact.

I did have a good forty minutes or so though, to ponder my idiocy, and imagine all the ways I was utterly screwed if someone did decide to adopt my bag as their own.  There were many self-inflicted mental slaps about the face, during that time.

View from Melbourne train

An idiot’s view (Photo: Yuyang Rihcard Lu)

As a result, I am in the process of drafting a policy document for myself around the use of smart phones and various (very engrossing) social media on public transport.

If you’re so inclined, you can join me in my sheepishnes, and tell me about something equally stupid that you’ve done in recent times.

It can’t possibly be just me… Can it?




5 thoughts on “(my laptop’s on a) Midnight Train to Georgia

  1. Who doesn’t love an audience when they go to the toilet?! Well there are so many silly things I could share Marnie… How about the time, when for no particular reason, I decided to try to walk up the ‘down’ escalators at the airport while pulling a very heavy suitcase behind me? Many people around me. Some thought I was drunk, but I think most assumed I had a mental illness of some sort, or just ‘challenged’ on a few levels perhaps. It was a great moment I won’t forgot, made so much more memorable by the fact that it was quite hard to quickly turn a very heavy suitcase around while people are descending in front of you…

  2. Huge fan of blogging workshops. We’re bringing ours to Australia next year and look forward to hearing your insights from this year.

  3. Thanks for the offer to share an episode of stupidity, Marnie.

    Mine was recent, the Friday of the Australia Day weekend. I arrived home that afternoon to find among my mail a letter with a Melbourne address. There was no stamp, but that’s not unusual these days, I thought. That it was misdelivered to Anglesea was another oddity, but I was once a postie and am aware these things, while rare, can happen. There was a bulky item inside that on further ‘feeling’ appeared to be a key. The letter was from a local real estate agent, newly sealed and the address typed etc, so it looked official.

    Normally, I probably wouldn’t have forwarded it immediately, but it was 4.30pm and I thought the people in Melbourne were likely waiting for the key. So I dashed down to the postal box before the final 5.00pm collection, and promptly thought no more about it.

    Where I live there are three dwellings. The other two are sometimes used as holiday rentals. Later that evening people arrived to occupy one of those properties for the weekend. They knocked on my door. Did I know anything about the key that was meant to be in the letter box, because they couldn’t find it?

    I responded no one had mentioned it to me – had they contacted the agent? They had tried ringing but only got a recorded message. I suggested they go to the office because there was probably an after-hours number advertised. I also did a search for the key, but couldn’t find it in any of the letter boxes.

    A little while later the penny finally dropped and I made the connection between the letter I forwarded and what they sought, but by then they already had a spare key and were inside.

    Now, a smart person would’ve left it at that and no-one would’ve been any the wiser about how the letter found itself on the way to Melbourne. But next morning I went into the estate agency and explained the mystery of the missing key, thinking it might help them retrieve it. The receptionist wasn’t impressed assuming the absence of a stamp should’ve been enough to avoid any confusion.

    Apparently the keys were normally left in the meter box, but the previous tenant was reluctant to do this, so a letter was considered a more secure form of transferral. The receptionist was confident the local post office would notice and intercept, but I never found out if that’s what happened.

    Anyway, I reckon I’ve done enough silly things to fill three blogs. If you would like to read about the time I thought I was catching a ferry across the Camel River in Cornwell, but ended up on a fishing trip – you can find it here: http://spinksytravelworld.com/pirate-of-padstow/

    • Oh I love it Paul!
      A kind of confused Good Samaritan. And then owning up when any other shmuck would have quickly retreated and never told a soul…
      Thank you for sharing – am heading over to read your other account 🙂

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